We don’t know who we are anymore.

Broad statement, I know. But, I think that for an awful lot of people – too many, actually – it’s true.

We don’t know who we are anymore.

When I look at all that’s going on in our country and in the world, I see confusion. People are confused about morals, politics, religion, civil rights and responsibilities, marriage and family structure, and even their own genders, for Pete’s sake.

We don’t know who we are relation to our country. Take, for example, NFL players who refuse to stand for the national anthem.

We don’t know who we are in relation to our communities. We saw that – continue seeing that – in the unrest in cities throughout the US.

We don’t know who we are in relation to our fellow human beings. Think of the shocking number of Chicago homicides in 2016 – 512 and counting with three more months to go before the year’s end. Closer to know, a practical point. How many of us know all of our neighbors on a first name basis? I’d be lying if I said I did.

We don’t know who we are in relation to our families. That, sadly, is drawn to our attention far too often on the nightly news when spouses, parents, and children kill each other.

More than any of this, we don’t know who we are in relation to God.

Granted, my view might seem simplistic. But, I really do think that the answer is simplistic.

We don’t know who we are in relation to God.

I think we’ve lost sight of the fact that God is the all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-loving Creator. His Word is Truth. His wisdom is beyond compare. In a nutshell, he calls the shots (no pun intended). He made us, rules us, tends us, mends us, and sustains us.

He governs all, always, everywhere.

He gave us the Ten Commandments and insists that we obey them, not to protect himself, but to protect us from physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual harm. Let’s face it. He’s far smarter than we are.

Yet we forget that. Or, we choose to ignore it.

We forget that he’s the Sovereign King and we are the subjects, not the other way around. I think about that every time I hear someone say, “I can be holy without going to church.” Or, “I can pray just as well at home.”

Really?

I think folks who say that have it backwards. We pray and worship because God is holy and so that we can – by his divine grace – become as like to him as possible, given our human limitations and sinfulness. We don’t pray and worship (or choose not to) because we are holy and God should become more like us.

Our lack of identity, self-worth and understanding of purpose is because we keep missing that First Commandment:

I am the Lord your God. You shall not have strange gods before me.

We also miss the reason we even exist.

I still like best the way the Baltimore Catechism states it:

God made me to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world, and to be happy with Him forever in the next. (#150)

As a society, perhaps as a humanity, we’ve begun to lose sight of who God is and who we are in relation to him. If we could let one simple fact sink into our heads and stubborn hearts, we’d no longer be confused about most, if not all, the issues we face.

God is Father. We are his children. Therefore, we’re called to obey his commandments, respect ourselves and each other as children of God, and love him with all our hearts, minds and souls.

If we did that, we’d know exactly who we are.